Hockey rules

There are ancient wall sculptures and paintings of individuals playing with a ball and a stick that resemble modern hockey quite well.

However, the hockey we play today has undergone significant changes, and it is now played under a set of guidelines established by the game’s keepers. The Hockey Rules Committee, reports to the International Federation of Hockey (FIH).

1. How to Play Hockey 

Before the allotted time expires, the purpose of hockey is to score more goals than the opposing team. To handle the ball and drive it against the goalpost of the opposing team to score for their team, every player uses a hockey stick.

A hockey stick has a long handle and a head with a curve and a flat side.

A hockey rules and hockey stick’s weight is limited to 737g. The fibres used to make contemporary hockey sticks are aramid, carbon, and glass. To increase strength, these fibres are laminated, and sticks are produced by standards.

Hockey rules and hockey sticks were previously constructed of wood. However, the development of synthetic pitches compelled stick manufacturing improvements.

2. Basic Hockey Rules

When teaching young children hockey, you can apply the fundamental guidelines listed below:

  • Only the flat side of the player’s stick may be used to strike the ball.
  • Hockey rules and players are not permitted to use their feet or any other body parts to control the ball at any point, except for the custodian.
  • Only from inside the striking circle in front of the opposition’s goal are goals scored. It doesn’t count if the hockey puck is thrown into the goal from outside the circle.

3. Hockey Equipment Guidance

i. Balls:

The ideal hockey ball for kids to use is a “Quicksticks” hockey ball, which is large, lightweight, and intended for usage on playgrounds in elementary schools.

Alternately, a range of balls in various sizes can be utilized to distinguish and cater to the demands of specific groups or individuals.

It is recommended that you give kids a softer ball to play with if you’re playing hockey indoors and follow the hockey rules. 

ii. Sticks:

Be careful that the kids don’t hold up their sticks above their heads. Remind the kids to verify that the space around them is clear before they begin learning how to hit the ball, especially the space behind them for the backswing.

iii. How to hold a hockey stick:

  • Naturally left-handed players must use right-handed sticks when playing and use the hockey rules, unlike in other sports use sticks, bats, or clubs. A flat side and a rounded side are on each stick. Both field players and goalkeepers are limited to using the stick’s flat side.
  • The thumb and fingers of the left hand should form a ‘V’ shape in line with the hooked portion of the stick when the left hand is at the top of the stick to dribble. About halfway down the stick, or where the grip stops, is where the right hand should be. When “push passing” the ball, this is also how you grip the stick.
  • You must adjust your grip before hitting the ball by raising your right hand to meet your left at the top of the stick.
  • Be mindful that children may unintentionally lift balls into the air, and make sure they are dispersed while practising hitting.

4. How many players in hockey?

There are 11 players on each hockey team, including a goaltender and 10 field players. The amount of times a player may be substituted is unlimited, and there are five available replacements. This practice is referred to as rolling substitution.

Defenders, midfielders, and strikers are the most popular categories used to group field players. The defensive core of a team is made up of fullbacks, wingbacks, centerbacks, and sweepers. Its major duty is to prevent the opposing team from scoring.

All players are properly following the hockey rules and properly playing this hockey game.

On the other hand, the forwards, which include centre forwards, wingers, and inside forwards, are primarily responsible for scoring goals and easily following the hockey rules.

Even though players are given defined positions, there are no set jobs in contemporary hockey.

Midfielders assist in both offence and defense by serving as a link between forwards and defenders. According to their preferred style of play, each team arranges its field players differently.

5. Hockey ground measurement

A hockey pitch has a rectangular shape and is 91.4 meters long and 55 meters wide. Pitch surfaces today are comprised of synthetic materials.

A centerline splits the land in half, and each half is further separated by a 23-meter line and a Dee, or the striking circle, which is a semicircle with a 14.63-meter diameter.

These Dee are the goalposts. Only shots from inside the hitting circle count towards goals; shots from outside the circle do not count.

  • Penalty corner in hockey: 

When a player fouls inside the striking circle, the opposing team is given a penalty corner, though not usually to prevent a potential goal-scoring opportunity.

The ball touching a player’s feet within the circle is the most frequent reason for a penalty corner. The umpire may still grant a penalty corner if a violation occurs outside the striking circle but within the 23-meter zone if the violation is serious.

  • Penalty stroke in hockey:

A penalty stroke or penalty flick is awarded when an infraction inside the circle prevents a goal from being scored. In contrast to a penalty corner, a custodian during a penalty stroke must stop a straight shot from the penalty spot, which is 6.475m in front of the goal line. 

The attacking player attempts to fire the ball into the goal while the custodian uses his stick and body to stop the ball from crossing the goal line.

  • Free hit in hockey:

If a team’s opponent fouls outside of the circle, that team receives a free hit. It is captured not far from the scene of the crime.

The ball must remain motionless during a free hit, and competitors must be at least five meters away. If the ball crosses the backline off the stick of any player, play is restarted with the ball on the 23-meter line and in line with where it crossed the backline.

A defending player or the goalie and it is determined that it was an unintended move. The 23m restart is frequently used, and in this situation, the free-hit hockey rules are in effect.


In conclusion, hockey is an exciting sport due to the dynamic fusion of teamwork, skill, and strategy. The goal is the same whether playing on ice or a pitch: outscore your opponent while following the fundamental laws.

Players manoeuvre the ball while holding sticks in their hands to breach the opposing goalpost. The game’s main values are respect, safety, and sportsmanship, and variations like ice hockey and hockey rules provide a variety of experiences.

Also, check out Best Top 10 Indian Hockey Players

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